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Peer-to-Peer, Anonymous Storytelling by Sara Pereda

In the first session of the Peer-to-Peer Learning Sessions, Youth Council member Sara Pereda presented a feminist perspective of Anonymous Storytelling in the Media. Beginning with a distinction of the political self, the narrated self and the private self - a clear understanding was given of the layers of anonymous storytelling and how changing external environments creates an interaction between layers.

This interaction occurs when individuals possess different intentions for their agency corresponding to external stimuli and societal positionality. From this vantage point, in Sara asks: 'is anonymity a threat or a tool?’ To answer this, it is important to be aware of contextual realities and personal intentions of those who invoke anonymity in each case. Due to their subjugated and oppressed historical, social and cultural positioning throughout time and place, women have found anonymity a powerful tool. If storytelling is understood as a political act in conflict contexts, the dissemination of women's stories through different mediums acts is a powerful mechanism to enable women's contribution to political life. Anonymous storytelling can therefore be understood as an important method within the feminist struggle, supporting women’s precarious situations in conditions of heightened conflict. It allows women to participate in political debate, challenge systemic issues and raise their voice whilst simultaneously ensuring safety by protecting their identity. In conflict-affected situations, the act of anonymous storytelling is thus an empowering instrument for women through which they are able to participate in public life and share their experiences, without fear of becoming hyper-visible and targeted for their active stance.

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